More popular than ever: Summer swimming pools

In the 1960’s, I did not have a swimming pool but an old-fashioned sprinkler when I was a toddler. Later, my best friend had an above ground pool that was almost four feet and lasted a couple of years. But again, in the late 1960’s my friend was a member of  the Jewish Community Center located at the corner of 91st and Jeffrey in Chicago. Many went to swim at the Chicago park district pools but this was the best because it was brand new.We had moved to Dolton in the early 1970’s and it was the Dorchester Club that was all the rage for summer swimming.

Above ground pools were expensive during my childhood years, not that deep and difficult to set up. Vinyl linings always ripped and the sides unless steel were flimsy. You also needed a big hole. They were also difficult to store because many had to be taken down every year. Prices ran from 20 to 100 dollars. Montgomery Ward had a good selection. However, Doughboy was a popular manufacture and still exists today creating their first above pool in the 1950’s.

According to the Spruce,when above-ground swimming pools became popular during the 1950s and 1960s, the most common shape available was the classic round. It remains popular today but has been updated with decking, fencing, stairs, and safety gates. Today, their is a mass selection of above ground pools that offer hard sided, metal frames and even a soft pool with little to no assembly. There are still inflatable pools as well. Pools can run between about 100 dollars for small, inflatable pools to over 2,000 that include filtration, liner, light, ladder and maintenance kit.

When my kids were growing up in the 1980’s, our town home complex in Downers Grove had in ground swimming pool. And it was not crowded. Still there today, I have been able to swim without much restriction this year despite the Covid virus though I do have to request permission and fill out survey.

You’ll spend anywhere from $20,000 to $65,000 or more to install a pool depending on the type of material you choose. In-ground models are available in three types: concrete, vinyl and fiberglass.

With summers like these that keep us home, summer family pools offer a new vacation opportunity.